Longevity News & Review

By Robert Goldman
For The Bali Times

Longevity News and Review provides readers with the latest information in breakthroughs pertaining to the extension of the healthy human lifespan. These news summaries are compiled by the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M; www.worldhealth.net), a non-profit medical society composed of 20,000 physician and scientist members from 90 nations, united in a mission to advance biomedical technologies to detect, prevent, and treat aging related disease and to promote research into methods to retard and optimize the human aging process. Dr. Ronald Klatz, A4M president, and Dr. Robert Goldman, A4M chairman, physician co-founders of the anti-aging medical movement, distill these headlines and provide their commentary

Calcium Supplementation Slashes Bone Fracture Risk in Healthy Adults

The use of calcium, usually in combination with Vitamin D, is widely recommended to reduce the risk of bone fracture in older people. Heike Bischoff-Ferrari, from the University Hospital Zurich (Switzerland), and colleagues have found that healthy men and women can benefit from calcium supplementation as well. Their study, which followed 930 healthy men and women (average age 61 years) for a period of 14 years in total, found that calcium supplementation (at 1200 mg elemental calcium per day) reduced the risk of fracture by 72 percent. The beneficial effect was no longer observed when supplementation was stopped.

Dr. Klatz observes: Worldwide fracture rates are increasing as a result of the aging population. As such, prevention is an important public health goal. This study adds to the body of evidence demonstrating the preventative value of calcium in bone health.

Excess Weight Increases Age-Related Cognitive Decline

Industrialized countries have witnessed an alarming rise in obesity, and in these nations the numbers of cases of cognitive decline, diagnosed as dementia, is on the rise. Youfa Wang, from Johns Hopkins University (Maryland), and colleagues conducted a meta-analysis involving data resulting from 10 independent studies. The researchers found that obesity, or having a body mass index of 30 or higher, increased a person’s risk of dementia by more than 40 percent. Obesity was found to have a particularly strong effect on Alzheimer’s Disease, increasing the risk of that disorder by 80 percent.

Remarks Dr. Goldman: More than two-thirds of American adults are overweight or obese. Dementia afflicts as many as 10 percent of Americans age 65-plus. Consequently, any causal role of excess weight in age-related cognitive decline, as is suggested by this study, is significant from a public health perspective.

Vitamin D Levels Correspond to Heart Attack Risk

Vitamin D deficiency has been related to an ever-increasing number of diseases, such as cancer, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and some infectious diseases. Edward Giovannucci, from the Harvard School of Public Health (Massachusetts), and colleagues, reviewed the medical records and blood samples of 454 men ages 40 and 75 with a history of non-fatal heart attack or fatal heart disease. The researchers found that men with vitamin D deficiency were 143 percent more likely to suffer from a heart attack (compared to men with sufficient levels of the vitamin). The researchers also note that men with moderate Vitamin D levels were also at elevated risk (compared to men with sufficient Vitamin D levels).

Comments Dr. Klatz: This study is the latest to suggest the beneficial advantages of increased daily Vitamin D intake. The data demonstrates a clear potential for a basic nutrient to make such a significant impact on disease.

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